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The Caribbean region has been an attractive area of the world since Columbus rediscovered it in 1492. In colonial times the Caribbean was an area of settlement, economic exploitation, and intense competition between the powerful nations of Spain, England, France, and Holland. Geological interest in the region, in a sense, started with the search for gold, silver, and precious stones, and the quest for the sources of the El Dorado legend. Many accounts of exploration during the conquest not only mention fabulous mines but also describe volcanoes, thermal springs, and the effects of earthquakes. It was only natural that...

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